Sunshine Kennels and Lori Peper-Rucks

Making the News! 


Willie and Lori

Willie scenting article before searching

Local finalist for National Dog Trainer of the Year By Lynda Berg Olds Luck is again gaining national notoriety and this time it is not because of yo-yos or beef or marathons, it is because (rural) Luck is home to Lori Peper- Rucks who has been named a finalist in a National Dog Trainer of the Year contest. This contest is sponsored by a local Milltown business. Peper-Rucks is well known in Polk County for her work with Search and Rescue dogs, K-9 Cops and Therapy dogs, as well as the public and private training she provides out of Sunshine Kennels, located at her Luck residence. “I am honored to be a finalist for National Dog Trainer of the Year,” Peper-Rucks told the Enterprise Press on Sunday night. “I am so blessed to be able to do what I love - training dogs! And I have met so many wonderful people throughout the years, many of whom have become friends.” The local business, Great Mats (a national dog training and dog daycare flooring industry leader), stated in a press release, “It takes a special kind of person to be a dog trainer. In most cases these trainers must not only be able to understand the animal’s behavior, but also how to work with its owner to ensure the training sticks. In the process, many dog trainers build a bond with both the animal and its owner that will leave a lasting impact on both.” The business wanted to honor these trainers that make a positive influence on the lives of dogs, owners and their communities, which is why they created the National Dog Trainer of the Year Contest. This contest recognizes dog trainers with integrity, outstanding customer service and quality training methods. Dog trainers have been nominated for this award by their clients, peers and community members based on these traits and six finalists have been named, representing four states, for the 2015 National Dog Trainer of the Year Award. The other five finalists Peper-Rucks is now competing with for the prestigious national award are from far-flung parts of the country. Voting is taking place on Greatmats’ Facebook page ( now through Nov. 30 and the winner will be announced Jan. 4, 2016. This National Dog Trainer of the Year Contest is one of four simultaneous contests honoring instructors and trainers from various industries for their commitment to making a positive difference in the lives of their students, clients and community. The public is invited to visit Peper-Ruck’s website and to see some of what she does – and once informed of all the reasons Peper-Rucks has received this honor - to take the time to vote. She has professionally trained dogs since 1975 and is certified through the National Association for Search and Rescue Dogs, with the equivalent experience. Peper-Rucks trains dogs for law enforcement, private investigators and security agencies. She trains them for tracking/trailing, apprehension, evidence, narcotics detection, and cadaver recovery, with obedience as a foundation for control. For the novice, “Schutzhund” is a German word that means “protection dog.” It refers to a sport that focuses on developing and evaluating those traits in dogs that make them more useful and happier companions to their owners, according to Wikipedia. Peper-Rucks does all of her training in a motivational style so it makes sense to the dogs and is more enjoyable for the handler. She says, “If it doesn’t make sense to the dog, it is just another theory.” Peper-Rucks is especially dedicated to training dogs for Search and Rescue as she believes they are an extremely valuable tool in assisting law enforcement agencies to find lost people, disaster victims, cadavers and drowning victims. She has a specialty unit of her Sunshine Service Dogs who are members of DAD/DAC – Dogs Against Drugs and Dogs Against Crimes. The K-9s work with law enforcement and school authorities to educate and do random searches in the schools. But her experience doesn’t stop there. Peper-Rucks has also trained Service Dogs for people with disabilities. Mobility Dogs are trained to assist with daily tasks of retrieving, opening doors, pulling wheelchairs, turning off/on light switches and a variety of other tasks. Further, she trains Sensitive Detection Dogs as well. These dogs are trained to detect seizures. Also, she trains Hearing Dogs to assist the deaf, allowing them to live more independent lives. “And to give them a companion beyond words,” she said. Another program near and dear to Peper-Ruck’s heart is her work with Therapy Dogs. She instructs and certifies volunteers with their dogs so they may provide comfort and companionship at nursing homes and other care centers. She also works closely with school personnel to have these dogs assist with educational behavior and psychological enhancement. She also very much enjoys her work with the Tales with Tails program where kids get to read books to avid canine (non-judgmental listeners). The list goes on, but one thing is certain. Peper-Rucks loves what she does – and it shows with her work with “man’s best friend.”

Article from Polk County Ledger papers by Lynda Berg Olds

Thank you for nominating me and for voting ( voting is closed now )

 K9 Rocky and his handler Officer Myhre of Milford, Iowa PD

They are already a successful narcotics detection and tracking team, and  the team is also certified in tracking/trailing. After this bust the team was called out to search and track for an elderly dementia person who wandered from a room at a large resort.


 The Sunshine Service Dogs, Search and Rescue K9 Unit had the priveledged opportunity to do a mock search with the Winona Dive Team and the Winona County Sherrif Department in May 2011.

 We are honored to be a presenter at the WI Sheriff and Deputy winter conference 2010. We enjoyed sharing about our services and the capabilities of our search dogs. Thank you for the  warm welcome, your great interest and response.

Chief Vold and K9 Certain

a Narcotics detection and tracking K9 

Great bust, seized a Cadillac Escalade and $6,500.00 cash! Congratulations Chief Vold and K9 Certain

 K9 Kaiser engaged on helper Derek                K9 Kaiser persuing Derek

      We're proud of Ranger Sears and K9 Kaiser who is a dual purpose K9 working for the National Park Service. He is gentle enough to have kids and public petting him during the day and yet when necessary able to get into work mode and track a suspect or look for a lost or missing person; detect narcotics, search a building, or apprehend a suspect if necessary. When not working, Kaiser is at home as a family companion.

SAR K9 Klaus who was bred and started in SAR training here at Sunshine Kennels; along with handler Kris made a great search for a young boy in San Jose, Calif.  

 We are proud to have another K9 team out working!

Introducing K9 Duece and his handler Deputy Brett Kohnke

of Dunn County, WI.

"Just wanted to touch base and let you know Duece already has 5 arrests under his belt. He had two alerts his first night out and one tonight."  This is a quote from his handler Brett Kohnke. (This is his first 4 days out on the job, and the first two arrests were on his first night working)!


"Certain" is a narcotics detection and tracking K9 with handler Chief Derrick Vold of Independence, WI, PD. We are proud of this team! In 2010 they had 47 arrests, two successful tracks after suspects, and a successful track for a missing 7 year old girl that had been missing for 6 hours.

City's New Cruiser...See photo and Read all about it below!

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 "Caddy" is a dog we bred and trained for Jason for his new business, K9solutions, as a narcotics detection K9. Caddy is a son our our female, Angel; and a son of our male, Blaze. You can read more about Angel and Blaze on our Labrador Retriever page.  Click below to read full article about Jason and "Caddy".



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 This is a picture of a narcotics K9 I trained, named Certain with handler Chief Derrick, after a vehicle stop.

Lori Peper-Rucks of Sunshine Kennels and K9 Training bred, and trained Certain as a narcotics K9 for Chief Vold of Independence, WI. Certain and Chief Vold did their training at Sunshine Kennels and K9 Training, together in December 2008. Chief Vold and Certain has been working together for 4 months now. Together Certain and Chief Vold have worked to put many in jail, and take drugs off the streets. Lori is proud of Certain and Chief Vold finding meth on this Escalade, allowing them to seize the Escalade and sixty-five hundred dollars in cash. Lori called two days later after hearing about the find, to congratulate Chief Vold and found out the next day they made another vehicle stop and found marijuana and again seized another vehicle. 



We are proud of Don and his service dog "Buddy" who recieved the 2011 Pet Hall of Fame Award from the Wisconsin Veterinary Medical Association.  

Contact us at:

Sunshine Kennels & K9 Training

2019 - 100th Street, Luck, WI 54853

 (715) 553-1906 cell


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“But ask the animals and they will teach you.”

Job 12:7 NIV